Hypothermia

by Kafaraqgatri [Reviews - 6]

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  • All Ages
  • None
  • Drama, Fluff, Het, Romance

Author's Notes:
Set between The King's Demon's and The Five Doctors

“What have you been eating, Tegan?” The Doctor muttered to himself as he placed his sleeping companion on her bed. Tegan didn’t reply and she rolled on to her stomach. The Doctor smiled and placed a hand on her shoulder. “What am I going to do with you?” he said.

“You could start by getting my some extra blankets,” sounded Tegan’s muffled voice. The Doctor jumped back in surprise. “Ah Tegan,” he spoke rather quickly, “I didn’t know that you were awake. Did I wake you?”

“No Doctor,” Tegan said sarcastically, flipping over to face the Doctor, her teeth chattering, “I’m actually asleep. That’s why I’m talking to you at the moment.” She shivered and pulled her sheets up higher. “Ha…have you got the air-conditioning on? It’s positively freezing in here,” Tegan stumbled, her eyes searching his face. She shivered again. The Doctor frowned and laid a hand on his companion’s forehead. “Are you feeling alright, Tegan?”

“Hell’s teeth, Doctor!” She said, “I almost drowned in that wretched lagoon, just ten minutes back. Do you think tha…that I would be alright?”

“Yes, I suppose you do have a point,” the Doctor said, feeling her pulse, “Your pulse is quite slow and you appear to be very cold. I think you might have hypothermia. You need medical attention immediately. Also, I would recommend you change from those bathers into something warmer. I’ll give you some time, but I’ll be back soon.” He had already found the chance to change into clean, dry clothes. Without a second’s hesitation, the Doctor ran quickly out of the room, leaving Tegan rugged up in her sheets.

“H…hypothermia?” Tegan shivered and pulled the blankets tighter.

***

Turlough was sitting in the library. He didn’t fancy books that much, but at the moment he just wanted to have some peace and quiet. He had plenty of time to think long and hard about the day’s events, as he delved into a particularly boring volume of the Cicero Murder Trials. Just as he flipped to the first page, heavy footsteps sounded down the hallway outside. Turlough got up to see what all the fuss was about. He stuck his head through the doorway. And there coming down on his left, running full pelt down the corridor was the Doctor, carrying a large woollen blanket under one arm. The Time Lord’s face was wild and worried.

“What happened?” Turlough asked, as the Doctor drew closer. The Doctor reached Turlough, closing the gap between them with a few long strides. “Turlough,” he said, his voice calm, “I need your help. Grab the medical kit and meet me in Tegan’s quarters. We may need it after all.”

“What happened?” Turlough repeated, “Is she ok, Doctor?”

“She’s got hypothermia, Turlough.” The Doctor said quickly, “It’s a dangerous condition, which needs immediate treatment.”

“So her little swim wasn’t good after all.”

“No Turlough, no it wasn’t. Come quickly.” And with that the Doctor disappeared down the corridor.

"Here we go again,” Turlough muttered as he sprinted down the hallway towards Tegan’s room.

***

Tegan had got up and changed into a long shirt and pants and was now back in bed, staring at the ceiling with a furious intensity. She was huddled between her blankets, wondering why it was always her who got in these situations. She heard the Doctor returning, his footsteps echoed around her room. “R…r…abbits!” She stuttered, as she experienced another violent shiver. The dull white ceiling lost her interest, and she decided to burrow herself underneath the cover. It was warm under there, but she was not warm enough. Something heavy landed on top of her with a loud thump. “What the…” Tegan muttered as she poked her head out from under the sheets.

The Doctor was staring her right in the face. “Oh, Tegan,” he said, smiling lightly, “There you are…”

***

He ran quickly down the endless corridors of the TARDIS. Tucked under one arm was a thick woollen blanket. The Doctor knew he had to warm Tegan up, and do it soon. Sprinting down the final hallway that led to Tegan’s room began to think about what he had to do. From basic knowledge, the Doctor knew that he had to warm Tegan up, but not too quickly, so putting her in a hot bath would do at all. He decided that he would wrap her up in blankets. But even still, she had been immersed in the water for a long time, almost an hour, so she would need something better than a few old blankets that had been sitting in some isolated room of the TARDIS for countless of years. Another idea came to mind, more effective method of heating his poor friend up. But the Doctor knew she probably wouldn’t like it.

He ran into her room, and then stopped. “Are you decent, Tegan?” he called from outside. When he got no reply, he put his head through the door and scanned the room. Tegan was nowhere to be found. Her bed, which lay in the corner, was empty. Walking over to the bed, he threw the blanket down onto it. A muffled sound emerged from underneath the covers. The Doctor lent closer, reaching for the sheets. Suddenly, Tegan’s face shot out from under the sheets. He stepped back and smiled. Tegan was always the inventive one. “Oh, Tegan,” he spoke, “There you are…” The Doctor trailed off as he heard distant footsteps. Turlough, the Doctor thought, as he grabbed a chair and pulled it to Tegan’s bedside, so he could sit next to her. “Doctor,” she spoke quietly, which was a change from her usual lively voice, “What’s g…g…going on?”

“Tegan,” he began, “As I said before, I think you have hypothermia. It is commonly caused by prolonged submersion in cold water, as it is in your case. We need to warm you up.” She pulled the new blanket up around her shoulders, so it tightly cocooned her. Tegan sneezed into her hand, and wiped it on the blanket. “So how d…do you int…tend to warm me up, D…D…Doctor?” Tegan stuttered, whilst shivering profoundly.

“Ah, well, there is a few ways that we will try. One will be the extra blankets, as you requested,” the Doctor replied, nodding to the blanket wrapped around her, “And the other way is…” He trailed off, unsure of how to word the next suggestion.

“The other way i…ssss?” Tegan asked, curious at what had the Doctor blushing so deeply.

“’I am quite sure that you rather won’t like this. The other way is that a companion, either Turlough or myself, stripped to the underclothing and sharing the same bed, could possibly help to warm the body…”

“What!” Tegan cried, giggling, “You mean, one of you has to hop in bed with me…naked?”

“Not naked, Tegan,” the Doctor said, sighing, “In our underclothes, meaning shirts and pants, not meaning nothing at all.”

“What a…a relief,” Tegan said, sighing melodramatically, “I suppose, if it will help me, then that’s what one of you will have to do.”

“Do you have a preference, Tegan,” the Doctor asked, “I mean, if you would prefer Turlough, then… And I suppose that would be for the best since my internal body temperature is only fifteen degrees Celsius and Turlough is much warmer than that…” The Doctor continued to prattle on, whilst Tegan stared at him with extreme boredom. There was nothing he could say to make her choose Turlough over him.

After at least a minute of babbling, Tegan stopped him with a laugh. “Hell’s T…t…teeth Doctor!” she sighed, her voice filled with laughter, “There is no chance th…that I would ever chose Turlough. Not in a million years.”

“Oh.” The Doctor said, relieved that Turlough wouldn’t be the one next to Tegan, but instead, he would be. There was an uncomfortable silence, which was soon broken by Turlough entering the room. “Doctor,” He puffed, holding up the med-kit with one hand and a steaming mug of tea in the other, “I got what you wanted.”

“Ah, thank you Turlough,” the Doctor said, getting up off the chair, “That is very much appreciated.”

“How is the patient?” Turlough said, “Any better?”

“No…t particularly,” Tegan replied. The Doctor took both the tea and the med-kit from Turlough.

“Do I have to do anything else, Doctor?” Turlough said, standing near the door, ready to run off at the right word.

“No, you’ve done enough for me Turlough. Thank you for this,” the Time Lord said, nodding towards the tea and the medical-kit, “You can go if you would like to.” Turlough stepped out of the room, and headed back in the direction of his own room.

***

Once Turlough was well down the corridor, the Doctor moved back to Tegan’s side and passed her the steaming cup of tea. “Here, have this chamomile tea.” The Doctor said softly, “It will warm you up.” While Tegan carefully sipped the hot brew, he went about taking off his coat and shoes and baggy cricket jumper. Tegan was using the time to think about what was about to happen. She was about to share her bed with the Doctor. It was going to be extremely awkward, but Tegan wouldn't give up the opportunity of being warm again and having the Doctor so close next to her, for anything in the universe. I think I like you, Doctor, Tegan thought as she sipped the tea and shivered, I really think I do.

Once she had finished her tea, she placed her cup down to her bedside table. The Doctor was waiting quietly beside the bed, his face unreadable. "Well, hop in t...th..then," she stuttered, pulling back the covers and motioning to the Doctor, "I'm freeeeeezing."

The Doctor hesitated, before sitting on the side of the bed. He swung his legs around and pulled up the covers. "Ah, Tegan," he said gently, "Could you be so kind as to move over. I am about to fall out." Tegan sniggered and wriggled over. "This bed wasn't meant for two," she said. The Doctor was right; it was most definitely warmer with him in the bed next to her. She sighed as her toes began to slowly defrost. But the rest of her body was still cold.

“How cold are you still felling, Tegan?” He said, looking at her with his midnight blue eyes. Tegan shivered fiercely, answering his question. She wished that the Doctor would come closer. He had been lying right on the edge of her bed; as if he was afraid she was too deadly to go near. “I think the purpose of this method, is that you actually lie beside me, so that your body heat warms me up. But if I’m wrong, Doctor, please tell me,” she understated. The Doctor let out a small sigh of defeat, and moved next to her, so that their bodies were touching each other. "I really should get you a bigger bed," he spoke, pausing briefly, "And bigger pillows. I can barely fit my head on." Tegan sighed, and placed her head on the Doctor's chest. "There you go then," she said, moving around a bit to get more comfortable, "You have the pillow."

***

The Doctor watched Tegan slowly sip the chamomile tea. He was in the process of striping off his favourite beige coat. The celery tickled his fingers as he pulled it off. Celery, he thought, why, out of all off the decorative vegetables, did I choose celery? He mulled over that point for a while, taking off also his shoes and jumper, whilst he watched Tegan finish off her tea. Her skin was still very pale and she was shivering quite regularly. She looked thoughtful; her mind was concentrating on a distant notion. Once she had finished, Tegan gently placed the empty mug on the small wooden table next to her bed. He stood there, unsure of how to start. He had mastered the etiquette of greeting and meeting people long ago at the Academy. He considered himself to be polite and engaging, but the one thing he didn’t have the courage to do was to ask his companion to let him into the bed, so that he could give her some very much needed warmth.

It was as if Tegan had read his mind. "Well, hop in t...th..then," she stammered, gesturing for him to join her, "I'm freeeeeezing." The Doctor was incredibly nervous. His nerves were buzzing, his hearts beating wildly out of control. But he managed to keep a straight face. Two quick strides took him to her bedside. Was that too quick? He thought worried, too desperate? He stopped, trying not to think about what was about to happen. He was afraid of letting Tegan know his true feelings for her, so he had to be composed. The Doctor took a deep breath, attempted to think of other things and plonked himself down next to Tegan. Soon he was underneath the covers, next to Tegan, and very anxious.

The Doctor stayed as far away from Tegan as he could manage. He didn’t want to seem too rash. But, he soon found himself about to tumble out of the small bed. "Ah, Tegan,” the Doctor asked, barley managing to keep his voice composed, "Could you be so kind as to move over. I am about to fall out." He heard her chuckle. Tegan shifted over slightly, leaving him with more room. "This bed wasn't meant for two," she commented. The Doctor thought so too. Usually, only one person would sleep in it.

Tegan was still cold. The Doctor shivered as icy air emanated off her. He couldn’t resist asking her how she was feeling. It was a particularly empathetic trait this current regeneration had. Picking up the courage to face her, he turned and looked into her deep brown eyes. “How cold are you still feeling, Tegan?” he asked her, noticing that her lips still had a blue tinge to them. He saw Tegan shivered violently and he felt his stomach curl at the sight of her suffering. How desperately he wanted to go closer to her. She needed the extra heat, and fast. But he couldn’t bring himself to it, and instead, he lay very close to the edge and stared at the ceiling.

“I think the purpose of this method, is that you actually lie beside me, so that your body heat warms me up. But if I’m wrong, Doctor, please tell me,” Tegan said, reading his mind perfectly again. He sighed for effect, so that she would think that he wasn’t eager. But on the inside, his hearts leapt for joy. Overcoming his anxiousness, he slid along, until he was right next to Tegan. The strangest thing happened. As soon as Tegan and he touched, wild electricity ran through his entire body. It was very distracting, so the Doctor tried to sidetrack himself from it. His head was touching Tegan’s head, the pillow was too small for two people. Her hair was still wet from her swim and it smell like damp earth. Tegan, when she wasn't soaking her herself in sickly sweet perfume, actually smelt quite nice, the Doctor thought. She smelt like pine trees and freshly dewed freesias. Her hand rested on his own. The Doctor could feel the electricity burning up his arm.

"I really should get you a bigger bed," the Doctor said, trying to make a conversation, thinking about things that needed replacing, "And bigger pillows. I can barely fit my head on." Tegan emitted a loud sigh. He saw her move her head off the pillow. Where was she going to put it now? He thought, watching Tegan’s movements. And then she placed her head on his chest. "There you go then," she spoke, "You have the pillow." Tegan squirmed around for a while, as if to get comfortable. The Doctor remained silent, trying to get over the fact that Tegan was laying her head his chest. He was confused, but also content. Although there was no way that he would ever tell her, he enjoyed having Tegan’s head resting on his chest. It was strangely comforting to him. After all that had happened that day, Tegan’s small gesture made him feel better.

***
"Did you know that you have a very bony cranium, Tegan?" He said softly, after a long silence.

"Are you always this whiny in bed," she murmured into his chest, "Or are you putting on a one-time act for me?"

"All for you, Tegan," he said softly, chuckling. His chest vibrated when he did this, and Tegan giggled. Tegan decided that she would waste this precious moment with talking. This would probably be the only time when she and the Doctor would ever be this close. Maybe I should go and half-drown myself more often, Tegan thought. Laying her ear on his sternum and listened to the Doctor's hearts beat. They were loudly thumping in his chest. Tegan decided that he must be feeling nervous about something. She felt his breath on her face, it was sweet and smell faintly of rosemary. Now she thought about it, the Doctor generally had a nice clean scent. Like soap and mint, but not at all feminine.

His chest rose and fell with every breath, a soothing rhythm to Tegan’s tired body and mind. Warm heat radiated off the Doctor. It settled over her like a blanket and Tegan felt much warmer. She stretched her worn-out legs and folded her arms on his torso. The Doctor wrapped a hand around her shoulders. "Feeling warmer?" he asked softly. Tegan sighed and nodded. Her eyes felt heavy and she soon found that they had closed. A soft humming sound filled her ears. She listed attentively, as the Doctor was quietly singing an unknown song.

***

A few minutes later, the Doctor noticed that Tegan had dozed off. She had relaxed and her breathing had become deeper. The Doctor stopped humming the Gallifreyan lullaby and smiled. He squeezed Tegan's shoulders gently. Carefully lifting one of her arms off of him, he placed his fingers of the inside of her wrist, checking her pulse. Her heart beat and her body temperature had returned to normal, which was a relief. Tegan sighed in her sleep and then yawned. The Doctor yawned also. He was incredibly tired. It was his turn to sleep. Time Lords slept rarely, only when they were physically or mentally drained. He had exerted himself too much that day. Tegan's soft breathing was soothing. His hearing picked up the sound of her heart beating, it's rhythm pounding in his ears. The Doctor was at peace with the world, and couldn't imagine a time when he would be happier. Holding Tegan, he closed his eyes and drifted off into a deep slumber.

***

Turlough had wasted enough time in the land of books, and had managed quite easily to pull himself away from a tedious novel called The Decameron. He got up off his bed and decided to see if the Doctor needed any help with Tegan. But as he walked into the room, he quickly walked out. "That would be about right," he exclaimed, seeing that Tegan and the Doctor were peacefully sleeping in the same bed. Tegan was almost lying directly on top of the Doctor, her hands draped loosely around his neck.

"Why were they still wearing their clothes though?" Turlough thought out loud, as he quickly walked back to his room, "Oh well, some people like to do some kinky things."